Frederic Marès, in addition to being a sculptor, developed a passion for collecting from a very early age. Over a period of more than 80 years, he assembled a large number of works of art (particularly sculpture) and more than 50,000 objects. In 1944, he gave his collections to the city of Barcelona which exhibited the collection two years later at the Museu Frederic Marès (Frederic Marès Museum), located in the former Royal Palace of the Counts of Barcelona.
In the basement and on the first two floors the collection of Hispanic sculpture
from ancient times until the 19th century are concentrated . One of the jewels in the crown is L’aparició de Jesús als seus deixebles al mar
(The Appearance of Jesus to his Disciples at the Sea), attributed to the Master of Cabestany, a masterpiece of the Catalan Romanesque which came from the monastery of Sant Pere de Rodes
. Sculpture of the Spanish Renaissance and Baroque periods are also well represented. To a lesser extent, other artistic collections are on display (painting, metalwork, furniture and textiles).
Also displayed in the same building are the objects that Marès had collected: dolls, clocks, fans, pipes, playing cards, daguerreotypes, pharmacy jars, tin soldiers, etc. This area is known as the Gabinet del col·leccionista,
or the Collector’s cabinet (Marès called it the Sentimental Museum). The visitor can take a tour through 17 rooms, in which the thousands of curious and endearing objects have been brought together which reflect the life and customs of the past, especially from the 19th century.
Finally, those who wish to delve more deeply into the figure of Frederic Marès can visit the study/library of the artist
. This space has a set of sculptural works by Marès, which he himself chose to display to the public, as well as a number of personal items.